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court action fails to prevent implementation of tribunal fees

11 July 2013

The Court of Session in Scotland has refused to grant an interim interdict (or injunction) which would have prevented the planned implementation of employment tribunal fees later this month.

A full hearing of the case will take place later this year. In the interim, the Lord Chancellor has given an undertaking that any fees paid after their introduction would be refunded (with interest) if the fee regime was held to be unlawful.

The new fees will come in as originally intended on 29th July, unless there is a successful appeal of this judgment or UNISON’s application for judicial review in the High Court is successful. UNISON’s argument is that the Government has acted in breach of EU law and that the fees regime will deny potential claimants access to justice.

This will be difficult to demonstrate, as the Government will rely on the need for public spending cuts across the board and that the fee remission scheme will allow access to the system for those of limited means.

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